Settlement hearing for former Cresson police chief scheduled

EBENSBURG – A Cambria County judge will oversee a hearing next week as Cresson Borough argues for the enforcement of a settlement agreement with a former police chief.

Judge Patrick Kiniry will listen to arguments May 16 to decide whether the borough can force former police Chief Jeff Kopsic to sign a settlement agreement that, in exchange for his resignation, would pay him a sum of not more than $2,500 for accrued sick leave, vacation and personal time, and would withdraw an appeal of unemployment compensation.

Kopsic, who had been employed by the borough for 12 years, was suspended in December after he “suffered an adverse employment action,” according to a petition filed by borough attorneys last month.

It’s unclear what led to Kopsic’s suspension, but borough officials have indicated that his actions were not criminal.

Both parties reached a resolution at a February hearing, according to borough solicitor Calvin J. Webb, and went on the record with the terms of a forthcoming settlement agreement.

But after Kopsic’s attorney, Thomas M. Dickey, received a copy of the settlement agreement March 7, he apparently stopped responding to messages, the petition said. The agreement was never signed.

Dickey did not return a call for comment.

Webb said he “doesn’t have an answer” as to why Kopsic won’t sign the agreement, since both sides accepted the terms months ago.

Mirror Staff Writer Kelly Cernetich is at 946-7520.